The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Harvesting carrots in the rain

Harvesting carrots in the rainLast year, I wrote that I dug our carrots early.  And this year...I dug them even sooner.  All this rain made a couple of my cabbage heads split over the weekend, and I know that carrots are prone to the same ailment.  I'd rather get those orange roots out of the ground before problems arise.  They probably wouldn't grow too much bigger over the next week or two anyway since many were already heftier than store-bought!

The downside of this fall's carrot harvest is that it's much smaller than in years past.  I dropped the ball and didn't replant after a dry spell caused sporadic carrot germination in July.  Then the straw I mulched with (which was supposed to be weed-free, since it was the second round from the feed store) sprouted scads of little grain plants.  As a result, carrots were getting lost in the sea of cover crops, and I opted to pull the vegetables out before they completely disappeared.

Of course, half a bushel of carrots is nothing to sneeze at.  And, if I'm honest, I would admit that I actually grew twice as many as we wanted last year --- Mark was getting heartily sick of carrot sticks before the winter ended.  Our fridge root cellar will keep the carrots we did grow this year crisp and sweet deep into the winter, and next year we'll plant many more to feed the goats.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I can't wait to show my husband that picture of your giant carrots, ours are tiny!
Comment by Teresa Fri Oct 17 07:38:15 2014
I was watching the news and with disease spreading and new illnesses taking people out left and right I was wondering if with your semi-hermit life style and limited public interaction along with your healthy diet, do you guys get sick much?
Comment by Kathleen Fri Oct 17 11:26:55 2014
Kathleen --- I'd have to ask Mark (the memory in the family) to try to figure out when was the last time we got sick. Maybe two or three years ago? We only tend to get sick when we're around small children. The effort we spend on good food and environment definitely pays off!
Comment by anna Fri Oct 17 13:15:43 2014

hi guys, I so love your posts!! Would you mind putting up an article about the pros and cons of making and using your Fridge Root Cellar? Thanks so much JOHN

Comment by john Fri Oct 17 15:37:56 2014
Hi, I recently found a quince tree growing in my yard. No idea how it got there. I know you are into fruit and I would be happy to send you some seeds if you want. According to Wikipedia they are easy to grow from seed and are sometimes used for root stock. Really enjoy your blog. Penny
Comment by Anonymous Fri Oct 17 16:50:21 2014

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